Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Dictionary

A modern dictionary of Catholic terms, both common and obscure. Find accurate definitions of words and phrases.

Search:

Or browse the dictionary by selecting a letter!
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

ANGEL

A pure, created spirit, called angel because some angels are sent by God as messengers to humans. An angel is a pure spirit because he has no body and does not depend for his existence or activity on matter. The Bible tells us that the angels constitute a vast multitude, beyond human reckoning. They differ in perfection of nature and grace. Each is an individual person. According to Christian tradition, they form three major categories in descending order. The word "angel" is the special name for the choir of angelic spirits, from whom guardian angels are sent to minster to human needs. The existence of angels has been twice defined by the Church: at the Fourth Lateran Council (Denzinger 800) and the First Vatican Council (Denzinger 3002). (Etym. Latin angelus, an angel; Greek angelos, messenger.)

All items in this dictionary are from Fr. John Hardon's Modern Catholic Dictionary, © Eternal Life. Used with permission.

Subscribe for free
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Recent Catholic Commentary

Faith of the Fatherless: The Psychology of Atheism 11 hours ago
Relax; the Pope didn't change Church teaching with a phone call 13 hours ago
Round Trip to the present moment: a Catholic jazz artist's latest offering April 22
Easter with the Pope April 21
Smaller Church, Bigger Faith, 3: Ecclesiastical Discipline April 17

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Pope Francis: Easter Vigil homily (full text) CWN - April 20
Pope Francis's Easter Message 'Urbi et Orbi' (To the City and the World): full text, link to video CWN - April 20